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From Here We Go Sublime

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Album Review

An atypical album release by Kompakt, From Here We Go Sublime, the debut full-length release by the Field, is nevertheless stunning, its less-is-more aesthetic striking because of its elegance as well as ease. For this reason alone, it's no wonder the German label, traditionally known for minimal techno, chose to release this album by Swedish producer Axel Willner, whose style — with its steady sense of propulsion, rhythmic invariance, and embrace of melody — is less techno than it is trance. Rest assured, though, that this isn't trance as you know it — euphoric fodder for superclubs this is not. Willner seems to draw primary influence from Wolfgang Voigt, whose productions as All and Gas are touchstones of contemporary ambient techno, especially the style championed by Kompakt on its annual Pop Ambient series of compilations (some of which, the earlier volumes in particular, include Voigt productions). The cut-up glitch style perfected by Akufen is another point of comparison for the Field, whose tracks often employ sampled snippets that are resequenced melodically (for instance, "A Paw in My Face" borrows millisecond snippets of Lionel Richie's schmaltzy ballad "Hello" to delightful effect). A few songs into From Here We Go Sublime, the Field formula becomes fairly clear: the evocative ambience of Gas/All and the cut-up glitch style of Akufen, plus the propulsion, invariance, and melody of trance — the sum of these parts then presented with the minimal elegance that is the trademark of Kompakt. The ease of the music is a major reason why it's so striking, for it seems as if anyone with the right software and the know-how could make music like this. Just follow the formula, right? Perhaps. Until others begin doing so, though, especially with such elegance — and in the wake of From Here We Go Sublime's exceptionally broad appeal, you can bet many will try — the Field stands more or less stylistically alone in the crowded field of electronic dance music. The catch is, this music is stunning in large part because of its novelty; as soon as it begins to be aped by other producers (as always happens), or as soon as you yourself tire of From Here We Go Sublime (not unreasonable, for it is awfully formulaic), it loses some of the charm that is most evident upon initial listen.

Customer Reviews

One of my favorite albums

I have listened to this hundreds of times. Ok, The Field (aka Axel Wilner) creates his music by sampling, repeating, and adding some live instrumentation. Lots of people do this and the results are middling to interesting for a few plays. What makes Wilner different is that he does it so brilliantly. He takes sampling and makes it a work of genius because he is so creative and has great taste. Yes, these are repetitive but they are repeating grooves that are a delight - full of joy and a "wow, that was so good I want to keep hearing it!" excitement. Simply a great album. It leaves all other techno lying in the dust.


I question whether or not this record is "perfect" because I never like to say anything is perfect, but rather that it's close and there's always room for improvement. But it's hard to go that same route with this one. So many records/bands try to bridge two broad styles, and often it sounds like two styles messing around in the same sandbox and not always getting along. They throw sand at each other and wreck each other's sand castles...and inevitably, it starts to sound like the band is trying to force creativity while clawing and scratching for the public's attention. However, this record sounds like it found the perfect marriage between two styles - the two broad styles of dance and downtempo. Downtempo invokes "chill". And usually that comes about because the beats fall below a certain bpm... and it would be simply too hard to dance to downtempo in the traditional sense. I want to "chill" with this record, while it moves at a dancefloor pace. I can put this record on the stereo, on my imaginary terrace, and while my friends start dancing to it around me, I'll be swaying in the hammock with a margarita. The beauty in this album is a constant thread fed through each track. Highly recommended for fans of beautiful electronica.


the field's from here we go sublime is minimal in it's approach: a sample from "i only have eyes for you" is used to full effect throughout the entire album, surrounded by lurching and driving robotic slurps and beeps. it's a chilly album, intended by the artist to relax the senses. as one of 2007's most overlooked and forgotten about albums, it is one of 2007's best. equally as effective on the runway as it is on the dancefloor as it is as background music for hipster olympics.


Born: Sweden

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '00s, '10s

One of the Kompakt label's most beloved and polarizing producers (he was accused of being a formula-reliant one-trick pony), Sweden's Axel Willner debuted in February 2005 with Things Keep Falling Down, a 12" containing a pair of blissed-out trance-techno tracks over ten minutes in length -- one of which, "Thought vs. Action," made clever use of the intro to the Four Tops' "I'll Be There." A follow-up 12", Sun and Ice (with samples of Lionel Richie and Kate Bush), appeared in April 2006, which led...
Full Bio
From Here We Go Sublime, The Field
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